Avatars...

Posted by: PChaterosx

Avatars... - 08/04/09 05:43 PM

How do you make your own Avatar?
Posted by: Gregg

Re: Avatars... - 08/04/09 06:28 PM

From the bar at the top (of most pages) click the My Stuff drop-down and go to Edit Profile. Avatar selection is at the bottom of the page.

But, if you want to make your own, that's not going to help. Sorry, I re-read your question after I posted the above. Read it too quickly the first time...
Posted by: Mississauga

Re: Avatars... - 08/04/09 06:29 PM

... and how does one load a custom avatar?
Posted by: PChaterosx

Re: Avatars... - 08/04/09 06:29 PM

I know that... I just want to make it my own picture...
Posted by: tacit

Re: Avatars... - 08/04/09 11:41 PM

It took a bit of work to get custom avatars up and running. I've allocated space on the server for people to upload their own avatars, and that's now been tested and seems to be working.

Basically, you create your avatar in a graphics program, save it as a JPEG or GIF, then use the "upload avatar" function from your profile. This will copy your avatar to the FineTunedMac server.

There's a limit on the size of the avatar (80x80 pixels and no more than 35K in size). Smaller file sizes are better; the vast majority of avatars shouldn't be anywhere near 35K.

[Edit] I've also changed the avatar picture size to 100x100 pixels. People who've already set avatars might need to re-set them to see the larger sizes. 80x80 seemed very small to me. smile
Posted by: Mississauga

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 03:12 AM

Thank you! smile
Posted by: PChaterosx

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 04:31 AM

The Browse button isn't working! I'm using IE 8 on Windows XP. (Ironic, isn't it?) Because my Tibook won't start... I hate it! Windows is so HARD!
Posted by: Kevin M. Dean

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 05:36 AM

Originally Posted By: tacit
It took a bit of work to get custom avatars up and running. I've allocated space on the server for people to upload their own avatars, and that's now been tested and seems to be working.


FYI, for future server performance, you'll note that many forum sites disable the uploading of custom avatars because it increases the load on the server when viewing threads with lots of posts with local avatars. External avatars of course don't cause that load.
Posted by: Gregg

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 05:52 AM

Originally Posted By: Kevin M. Dean
External avatars

???
Just curious. What do you mean by that terminology?
Posted by: Dave

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 06:36 AM

I'm thinking that an external avatar is one that is hosted on another server. But I have seen large-file-size avatars that were hosted on overworked servers delay the loading of a page on a forum that they were being used on.
Posted by: roger

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 08:18 AM

make sure you also enable avatars in your user preferences!

/My Stuff/Edit Preferences
Posted by: jchuzi

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 09:51 AM

For the first time, I decided to use an avatar. It was very easy to do by following Tacit's instructions. BTW, that happens to be a photo of the fantastic violin made for me by David Wiebe. For those fiddle fans who want more, go to David's Violin Gallery and look at violin # 47. I did the photography and I'm shamelessly pushing David's instruments (does this qualify as spam, Mods?). I have played several Strads and couldn't afford them (we're talking 7 figures here) and my violin is at least as good.

Maybe I'll be like Tacit sometime and change avatars periodically, perhaps to a photo of my snakes.
Posted by: donikatz

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 10:03 AM

Jon, I never knew you had snakes. What kind? I used to have a red tail boa, and also babysat a Rosy boa and a Burmese python.
Posted by: PChaterosx

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 10:06 AM

I got it! i think. Does it show up?
Posted by: donikatz

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 10:15 AM

Garbage -- Why am I not surprised? laugh
Posted by: PChaterosx

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 10:18 AM

lol! laugh It's Garbage with a coffee stain!
Posted by: Gregg

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 10:56 AM

Originally Posted By: PChaterosx
lol! laugh It's Garbage with a coffee stain!


Is the accent on the first syllable, or the second? (depends on if you're hoity toity I guess)
Posted by: PChaterosx

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 10:57 AM

The...First?
Posted by: jchuzi

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 12:26 PM

Originally Posted By: donikatz
Jon, I never knew you had snakes. What kind? I used to have a red tail boa, and also babysat a Rosy boa and a Burmese python.
We have two black rat snakes named Coil and Coilette. They are sisters aged 8 and 9 respectively. We have had them since October when we adopted them at the request of my former herpetology professor. He wild-caught their mother and bred her to get our two girls. Sadly, he is terminally ill, living in a nursing home, and unable to care for them. His wife is not in the best of health either so she couldn't do it.

Previously, we had a garter snake named Herpes (named after herpetology, naturally) who died last September at the age of 9, at least at our best guess. My wife caught her on our street while taking a walk and we kept her for 6 years. Or should I say that my wife caught Herpes when she was a streetwalker? tongue

Boas and pythons are too big for my taste. Our girls are 5 feet long, weigh around 1 kilogram and very tame.
Posted by: donikatz

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 02:24 PM

Right, now I remember Herpes. My red tail boa was too big for my taste too, so I eventually gave it up for adoption. In fact, it had been given to me by a friend who'd moved out of town; wouldn't have bought it myself. But Rosy boas only grow to about 3-4 ft and small diameter so they're great pets for boas. Would love to get one now, but the wife certainly wouldn't. Mostly because her vegetarian self wouldn't want its dinner anywhere around...
Posted by: jchuzi

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 02:55 PM

Our black rat snakes dine on mice but we buy them frozen and vacuum sealed from a reliable source. Naturally, we thaw them before feeding them to the girls.
Posted by: donikatz

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 03:42 PM

I used to get them frozen too, but I think that idea freaks out the wife even more. I remember they even used to sell cute little 6 packs called "Mice on Ice" with little ice skating cartoon mice on the label. That part was kinda funny, in a morbid sorta way. Even better was in college when I once made the stupid decision to store mice in a popsicle box and freaked out a roommate. He yelped, dropped the box, and little frozen plastic-wrapped mice flew everywhere.
Posted by: PChaterosx

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 03:54 PM

How did this discussion get turned into rats and snakes?
Posted by: JoBoy

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 03:57 PM

[quote=jchuzi]...(does this qualify as spam, Mods?)...

I'm sure your credits for good behavior over a long period of time will at least delay your censure. wink It's great to see so many of the old crowd gathering here! This community has a lot going for it.
Posted by: jchuzi

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 03:58 PM

Just to nitpick a little, the discussion turned to rat snakes. Rats have nothing to do with it. Besides, here in The Lounge, we are prone to having a "stream of consciousness". That means that things can get very, very undisciplined.
Posted by: JoBoy

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 04:10 PM

I uploaded the stock avatar of an airplane. It doesn't show up in my posts. I've tried re-uploading it, but no cigar. Is that feature working yet or is it my Midas Touch where everything turns to something that is definitely not gold?
Posted by: jchuzi

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 05:55 PM

This is probably a stupid question but did you click the Submit button at the bottom of the page?
Posted by: JoBoy

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 07:04 PM

That is not a stupid question. I am capable of such a thing, but I definitely did press it both times I tried. I used a more emphatic click the second time.
Posted by: JoBoy

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 07:08 PM

This is a test to see if the Avatar shows up......sheeessshhh!
Posted by: roger

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 08:00 PM

Originally Posted By: JoBoy
This is a test to see if the Avatar shows up......sheeessshhh!


fwiw, Jo, I'm seeing it!
Posted by: JoBoy

Re: Avatars... - 08/05/09 10:37 PM

Thanks! I assumed that everyone would see it, including me.
Posted by: donikatz

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 07:41 AM

If you're still not seeing it, try refreshing the page or deleting your browser cache. Cause it's definitely there smile
Posted by: Virtual1

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 11:58 AM

Originally Posted By: tacit
[Edit] I've also changed the avatar picture size to 100x100 pixels. People who've already set avatars might need to re-set them to see the larger sizes. 80x80 seemed very small to me. smile


My professor is looking mighty squat as a result. tongue

Why didn't you give us the option to give a URL to where our avatar is hosted, instead of hosting them all yourself?
Posted by: JoBoy

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 01:06 PM

blush blush
This reply is at least a double blush. I accessed the forum from my Dell XPS to see if the Avatars would show up there. No dice. Nobody's Avatar was showing on my account regardless of the operating system I used. Suddenly, jchuzi's question about clicking the submit button popped into my head. I thought, "What OTHER stupid mistake could I have made besides not clicking the submit button?" Suddenly, the word PREFERENCES was front and center in my mind. I humbly opened the preferences window and, sure enough, the question "Show User's Avatars?" was answered with a No radio button. One click on Yes and the Avatars all appeared! I don't think I even looked at the preferences since joining this forum. Although it's embarrassing, it is also a good reminder of a basic principle of problem solving. When there's a problem, mentally step back and try to characterize the precise nature of the problem. Often, the solution becomes obvious. I quit thinking I had a Mac problem when I saw that the problem also existed on a PC. In this business, an accurate diagnosis is 95% of the solution. Appropriate treatment is the goal, but an accurate diagnosis usually suggests what that treatment should be.
Posted by: MicroMatTech3

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 03:09 PM

Users who are not logged in do not see any avatars, in my experience.
Posted by: ryck

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 03:58 PM

Originally Posted By: jchuzi
I have played several Strads...

Jon:

Have you ever seen a two part documentary "The Art of Violin"? If you haven't, don't miss it when it comes on again - probably be PBS.

I saw it a few weeks ago and, although it had all the of the acclaimed masters like Kriesler, Menuhin, Stern, et cetera I was most taken with someone I had never heard of - Josef Hassid.

To my ear Hassid's sound had something I can only describe as soul. I have never heard anything like it. In the documentary it was 1940 and he was only 16. Apparently he never played again and 10 years later was dead from a lobotomy.

I looked for, found and ordered a CD that has some Hassid and someone else from the documentary (who was also spectacular and unknown to me), Ginette Neveu. Again, if you haven't seen the documentary...watch for it.

ryck
Posted by: jchuzi

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 04:02 PM

Not only have I seen it but I bought the videotape several years ago. Hassid had a reputation as the next Heifetz but, alas, he never lived long enough to fulfill his potential. Niveau was supposed to be one of the finest violinists ever. My personal favorites are Milstein, Kreisler and Heifetz, in that order. I was fortunate to hear M and H in person but Kreisler retired before I was old enough to get a chance. I only know his playing from recordings and they are wonderful. Nobody plays with that sort of warmth anymore.
Posted by: grelber

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 04:32 PM

I likewise tried to install/upload my walking cat avatar. It appeared to succeed, but no avatar appeared in an old message or in a new test message.
Any thoughts? If the avatar is there, I can't see it; the only thing is a smiley face.

And I just checked this post. Same thing.
Posted by: JoBoy

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 04:50 PM

I logged out and, sure enough, the Avatars disappeared. Thanks for the info.
Posted by: jchuzi

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 05:53 PM

I see your avatar (the walking cat).
Posted by: ...JER

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 06:03 PM

your walking cat shows up for me.

...JER
Posted by: MicroMatTech3

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 07:46 PM

Does the cat appear to be suffering from the same problem as Virtual1’s professor? Is cat 1.1 (100 by 100 pixels) available?
Posted by: roger

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 09:10 PM

Originally Posted By: roger
make sure you also enable avatars in your user preferences!

/My Stuff/Edit Preferences


just to be a snooty face. this was on Wednesday. cool

and yeah, I think the cat may be a bit flattened. but just a little.
Posted by: tacit

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 09:48 PM

Originally Posted By: Virtual1
Why didn't you give us the option to give a URL to where our avatar is hosted, instead of hosting them all yourself?


That's actually my preference, since that way the avatars don't use any of my bandwidth or space.

Some versions of UBB.threads have security issues with remote avatars. Older versions (version 6 and prior) had a really, really ugly security flaw where if you linked to a file that was actually a PHP script rather than a GIF or JPEG, the UBB software would cheerfully run the script and turn complete control of the Web server over to the attacker. That particular hole has been fixed, but I've been told that here may be another security problem with remote avatars and the current version of UBB.

I'm still doing some research on that. If it turns out that the security issues have been addressed and the current version is safe from remote avatar exploitation, I plan to enable remote avatars, but I don't want to do that until I'm convinced there's no security issues.
Posted by: dkmarsh

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 09:50 PM


Quote:
just to be a snooty face.

Well, it's entirely understandable to experience mild irritation at having the correct answer overlooked in ensuing cacophony. It's happened to me a time or two. wink

In this case, I wonder if part of the reason is simply a volume of posts we've become unaccustomed to. It took me a little while even to find that earlier post of yours after you quoted yourself...because it was on page 1, and I was reading page 2.

Since my prefs at MFIF were set to display 50 posts per page, and even "hot" threads were posted to at a slower rate than some of the early threads here at FTM, it just didn't occur to me that I could be on the second page!

We're averaging about 158 posts per day at the moment, an average I don't think we sustained at MFIF since before the two-week forced upgrade in the spring of 2008.
Posted by: roger

Re: Avatars... - 08/06/09 10:02 PM

exactly! I was hoping my smiley cool-face would show my good humor!

I'm visiting family for a few days and it's been very hard to keep up with the volume of posts! it's great!!

whee!!
Posted by: grelber

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 03:18 AM

Stack of replies:

Apparently the problem was a cache thing. I see it (and JoBoy's) now.

Unfortunately I can't fix the 'flatness'. The original source has disappeared from the Internet ether. Just like the guy with the upside-down glasses riding the bicycle, one day it'll all look right (side up).

By the bye, how come I've got a little yellow smiley face next to my name and everyone else has a little white 'death mask'?
Posted by: artie505

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 03:53 AM

> By the bye, how come I've got a little yellow smiley face next to my name and everyone else has a little white 'death mask'?

Because you're logged in and the rest of us aren't.

(Read me.)
Posted by: grelber

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 05:17 AM

Ah so ...

In 9 years over at the other place I never noticed that. Now that's sad.

This place is so much more comfortable — especially for someone like me with ancient OS and browser — no crashing when accessing threads or when constructing messages or ....

Me like it! Kudos to tacit et al!
Posted by: alternaut

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 06:37 AM

Originally Posted By: grelber
Unfortunately I can't fix the 'flatness'. The original source has disappeared from the Internet ether.

You're right that you cannot fix the display directly (tacit might), but you could do something at your end. Your avatar .gif is fine by itself, but (like Virtual1's) displays incorrectly in the forums because of its pixel size, yours being 51x116 px and Virtual1's 47x104 px. It's not because it is an animated gif: mine displays fine at 70x70 px even with the previous 80x80 limit.

You can easily see that for yourself if you save the file (right- or Control-click on the avatar and select 'Save Image To', or simply drag it to the desktop). Then open an empty browser tab or window and drag your file ('73.gif') into it to see the proper dimensions with its pixel size displayed in the tab/window title. Btw, this also shows that the original source of the image is no longer necessary because you already have a fully working copy.

Even so, one of these days you or your kitty may choke on OS 9... shocked
Posted by: grelber

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 09:32 AM

Yes, I know it looks good when I drag the GIF to an empty browser window; I did that prior to uploading it.

That said, I don't know how I might decrease its pixel size so that it renders properly in the FTMFs. Is it amenable to being Photoshopped? I've never tried to do anything with GIFs, what with their multiple images strung together.
Posted by: jchuzi

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 10:09 AM

I used Photoshop to reduce the size of the photo that I used for my avatar. Go to Image>Image Size. Actually, you might want to duplicate the image first so that you work on a copy (Image>Duplicate). That's what I did.
Posted by: cyn

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 10:19 AM

FYI, everyone: allowed avatar size is back to 80x80 pixels. If yours is larger, please resize it and upload the smaller one. Thanks!
Posted by: jchuzi

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 10:41 AM

Done!
Posted by: grelber

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 11:28 AM

I tried resizing my walking cat GIF/avatar* (via Photoshop) and all that did was create a single static image. I clearly have little idea what I'm doing — 99% of what Photoshop is about is opaque to me in any case. Any hints for the hopelessly handicapped would be gratefully received.
(* 51 pixels wide x 116 pixels high)

Am I in danger of having my semi-squashed pussycat 'erased'?
Posted by: jchuzi

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 11:52 AM

I'm a Photoshop expert compared to you. Only 98% of it is opaque to me. I have no idea how to work with a moving image, having only manipulated stills. If it's of any use, I set the larger dimension to 80 pixels and PS automatically resized the smaller one. Beyond that, I'm as lost as you.
Posted by: grelber

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 11:56 AM

Yeah, that's exactly what I tried, but it didn't translate to all the other images comprising the GIF (ie, it deleted everything but the initial image).
Are we having fun yet? wink
Posted by: alternaut

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 12:15 PM

FWIW, GIFBuilder for MacOS 9 may allow you to access the individual images making up your animated gif. You could use a graphics program like Photoshop to reduce the individual frames to 80x80 pixels max, and then re-import those frames into GIFBuilder to recreate the animation. I'm not sure all that would work (it's been a while since I fired up GIFBuilder and was current on its limitations), or if the image reduction would be acceptable. Definitely a rainy day job, but who knows...
Posted by: grelber

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 12:23 PM

Merci. But it'd have to be a rainy decade for me to come to terms with Photoshop and GIFBuilder.
I can live with slightly defective looking pussy cat, mashed down to 80x80, as long as she doesn't fall victim to erasure.
Posted by: roger

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 03:29 PM

Originally Posted By: cyn
FYI, everyone: allowed avatar size is back to 80x80 pixels. If yours is larger, please resize it and upload the smaller one. Thanks!


glad to do it, but curious as to why? fwiw, the "Registered: 08/06/09" date is more than 100 pixels, so the 100x100 isn't going to stretch the box or anything.
Posted by: alternaut

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 06:07 PM

FWIW, 80x80 is the default option. Other values may be possible, but could cause problems like slowdowns. I suspect Tacit is experimenting with various settings.
Posted by: knoodles

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 06:46 PM

I did mine with Graphic Converter. Allows you to scale all frames of an animated gif by choosing scale complete movie and when saving save all pages of multi page files. Took all of three minutes. If anyone here would like me to resize their avatar, let me know.
Posted by: alternaut

Re: Avatars... - 08/07/09 06:58 PM

Great call, Knoodles! cool I briefly considered mentioning GC above, but didn't have access then to check out the details.
Posted by: Virtual1

Re: Avatars... - 08/08/09 10:23 AM

fwiw that walking cat avatar I consider one of the best animated gifs I've seen. It's nothing special in any specific way, it just looks good
Posted by: ryck

Re: Avatars... - 08/08/09 06:11 PM

I created a new avatar but it had thin horizontal and vertical lines through it, which I assume was from cutting a square picture out of a rectangular one. The process I use is to cut an approximate square and then scale using Graphic Converter, setting one dimension at 100 pixels.

Is there a range within which we need to stay? For example, 100 pixels by 90 pixels is okay but greater than 10 pixels difference causes lines?

Thanks

ryck
Posted by: JoBoy

Re: Avatars... - 08/14/09 08:53 PM

Pardon the late reply. I tried it. You do have to be logged in to see the Avatars AND you must click the Yes radio button on your preference page. <grin>
Posted by: tacit

Re: Avatars... - 08/14/09 11:10 PM

It's not necessary to cut an approximate square; you can cut a precise square if you hold down the Shift key while you are using the cropping tool in whatever program you're using. Shift constrains a selection to be a perfect square.
Posted by: roger

Re: Avatars... - 08/15/09 05:57 AM

ToyViewer is a great little freeware image editor.
Posted by: JoBoy

Re: Avatars... - 08/15/09 12:01 PM

Roger:

Sorry to be so late in replying. The fact that you saw it and I didn't spurred me on to figure it out. Thanks for the assist.
Posted by: roger

Re: Avatars... - 08/15/09 05:56 PM

glad to help!! cool